In an open ocean, bitumen will likely sink, emulsify and form a lard-like substance

On Friday, June 15th, 2018 in Climate Change, Debate, Parliament

Elizabeth May

Madam Speaker, bravo to my colleague from Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke for knocking that last answer out of the park.

We both have ridings adjacent to each other. Our constituents are of the same view as my dear friend, the late Arthur Black, who used to say, when they talk about getting bitumen to tidewater. “Tidewater? That is my front yard.” That is how we feel about the Salish Sea.

My hon. colleague mentioned the difficulties of cleaning up a dilbit spill. We recently had a session at the University of Victoria where we learned it is quite likely in the open ocean that not only will bitumen and diluent separate, but the bitumen will begin to sink and emulsify and form a lard-like substance that could wash ashore on our beaches and would require being heated to be removed. I ask my hon. colleague to comment on the prospect of a dilbit spill.

Randall Garrison – Member for Esquimalt-Saanich-Sooke

Madam Speaker, I thank my neighbouring MP for her tireless support in opposition to this pipeline. We know very clearly that we do not have the evidence that dilbit can be cleaned up successfully, but we do know that this pipeline and a spill of this kind would threaten the thousands of jobs on the Lower Island that already exist in sport fishing, recreational fishing, and in tourism. The very backbone of our private sector economy is put at risk by a 700% increase in tanker traffic with no real prospect that a spill could be cleaned up.

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